Bernard Milian

supply chain interactions

Quantum physics teaches us that an isolated particle has no property in itself. A particle exists only through the interactions it has with other particles. It is the interactions that constitute matter. Within the broader universe, it is the interactions that make, for example, the earth turn around the sun, the moon around the earth, … Read more

centralized vs. decentralized supply chain nodes

International organizations often struggle with the question of whether and to what extent they should centralize their supply chain functions. Should demand and supply planners be integrated into a central function, at a group level or at a cluster level (whether by region or by business unit)? Or should these functions be as close to … Read more

sustainable supply chain - shipping containers

You may have read about eco-friendly shipping containers, whose floors are made of bamboo, rather than devastating tropical wood forests. Concerns have already been raised about the sustainability of the adhesive that’s used when manufacturing these floors. But the skeptics at the back of the room might point out bigger flaws. Can a container really … Read more

pull manufacturing

Most companies are experiencing difficult times on the supply side. Containers are piling up on one side of the globe and are sorely lacking on the other. Delays are piling up, and variability is clearly at a maximum on the supply side. Can our supply chains really be demand driven in this context? Does pull … Read more

agile supply chain

Under the shocks of the last two years, many companies have realized that they were suffering from structural weaknesses in their operations. The pandemic has put pressure on them to review certain processes.  For example, there has been an increased focus on uncertainty in S&OP, because who would believe that in a pandemic and lock … Read more

warning symbol - supply chain efficiency

Every planner today has hundreds or even thousands of references to manage. Often, these references must be synchronized during the assembly of products with complex bills of materials, where the slightest shortfall stops the flow. If you manufacture an electronic assembly with hundreds of components, a simple diode that costs nothing can stop everything. How … Read more

supply chain maturity - ladders

We often get questions or comments about the level of supply chain maturity required for companies to be ready to implement DDMRP and realize the significant operational benefits it brings. These questions are sometimes paradoxical.  Many companies tell us things like: “DDMRP sounds interesting, and well-suited to our environment, but we must first achieve more … Read more

You have probably already seen this diagram, which summarizes different manufacturing typologies, in one form or another: Is the Demand Driven model a good fit for these typologies? How would your demand driven manufacturing implementation change to support each environment? In each of these flow typologies, with the exception of Engineering-to-Order (ETO), customer demand moves … Read more

Submarine under water

What is the relationship between submarines and the global supply chain? Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to do with underwater container ships, and Elon Musk hasn’t floated the idea of a silk road via an underwater Hyperloop. Well, not yet, I guess. But what is it about? We have recently seen in the press the … Read more

projected inventory - man in hard hat and warehouse

When you learn the principles of MRP, you use a view like the one below. Periods   1 2 3 4 5 6 Forecast   40 50 40 40 70 20 Registered orders   80 45 30 50 50 5 Requirements   80 45 40 50 70 20 Projected Inventory 50 170 125 85 35 … Read more

intuitive supply chain: brain

What happens in our brain when we exercise our intuition?  A French scientific magazine recently devoted a fascinating dossier to intuition (Science & Vie, August 2021 ). It appears in particular that intuition is the automatic implementation by our brain of knowledge accumulated in our long-term memory. Far from being a random and therefore unreliable process, … Read more

For small and medium enterprises, the question of upstream supply chain vs. downstream supply chain management does not arise. The factory is in direct contact with the company’s customers, and the supply chain team handles the end-to-end planning process: sales forecasts, order taking, production planning, procurement, inventory management and distribution. In large, multi-site groups, things … Read more

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